Monday, June 6, 2011

Parenting Lesson: Communicate with Love

Notes from last week's parenting class:

In order to teach responsible behavior, we must be the example. As parents, we need to communicate with love. We need to listen to what our children are saying and be more responsive to them.

3 steps to good behavior:
1. Tell the child the behavior/task that you would like.
2. Praise them when behavior is good.
3. Give the child a physical reward i.e. hug, high-five, kiss

When requesting certain behavior, use "I" messages. "I need you to pick up your Legos". Give choices when possible i.e. "You may pick up your Legos now or after your bath, which do you choose?" Then, have child reiterate their choice.

Never ask a yes/no question that you don't want "no" for an answer. "Do you want to go to Nursery?" Instead, "It's time to go to Nursery."

Time out is an effective tool, but don't overuse it. From 18 months on, time out can be used, approximately one minute per age of the child.

Time out guidelines:
1. Tell child in advance the rules and guidelines for behavior.
2. When child misbehaves, tell her she is going to time out.
3. Ask the child to think about how else she could have handled the situation.
4. 1 minute per age - use a timer and timer starts when the child is quiet.
5. At the end of the time-out, ask the child for the solution to problem.
6. Give positive feedback when the behavior is good.

And, lastly, the common thread through all of the lessons - BE CONSISTENT and spend time LOVING and ENJOYING your children.


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